Sunday, January 09, 2011

Seniors in Rural Towns Benefit from Wireless Technology by Victor

Seniors in rural towns, have many obstacles to overcome when it comes to receiving healthcare. Technology, like 3M’s wireless stethoscope can record a patient’s heartbeat for them to transfer and analyze the sounds later. Wireless technology today allows crucial information to be shared between the employee and the employer. The organization, whether it be a hospital, rehabilitation facility or hospice, has the opportunity to seize the data necessary for both analysis and retention. Only can the leadership of the organization implement proper procedures to ensure the necessary data is quantified and shared with other department heads and or organizations to complete the plan of care.

This quality of care is enhanced with better and faster means of communication, whether it be skype, sharing documents online or editing plans-of-action with team members all over the world. Technology has been very good to us, but the time of emails, voicemails and “getting back to you”, are terms that are viewed more and more as an excuse to wait the problem out to the new leadership.

According to Denise Ferguson, the administrator at Colorado Comprehensive Spine, technology can assist in overcoming obstacles, but the drive for “community, “ must morph from within the community. Denise worked in Alaska for two years and said she gained 10 years worth of experience. In areas without a basic concept of healthcare, where smoking and drinking are the highest forms of social-interaction; virtual medicine is a better way to treat patients.

In rural towns where air flights replace two-hour drives; there are care centers that don’t have Intensive Care Units (ICU’s), which protects the care center from delivering babies and treating trauma. A trained specialist can look, review and give treatment advice to a patient, without the expense of paying to see a physician. In area like this, 50-70% of patients have to be transported anyway, according to Denise. 

The rest of this article is found at

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

My experience with a walk in bath, or a Hemi, was in an assisted living and in a home-health setting,

My experience with a walk in tubs, or a Hemi, was in the assisted living and home-health setting, for clients’ of the company I worked for in college. The Hemi was a walk-in tub, which the residents used. This system, allows the person to bathe in a position that is supposed to reduce the risk of falling in a bathroom, shower or tub.

Another experience with walk in tubs:

-Is the walk in tub used to reduce the risk of fall, due to what circumstances?

Some seniors I have worked for use the system, because they had a low Activity of Daily Living (ADL’s) as prescribed by a nurse and team of coordinators. The Activity of Daily Living is a tool used to measure our ability to thrive on our own.

Other seniors prefer to use a walk in tub, for comfort. The job at this time, was to assist the resident, by assisting them undress, transfer, clean if necessary, dry and dress with fresh clothes. The term ASSIST, had many meanings. Some residents are full assist and require two caregivers. They are in a wheelchair, most likely, or are recovering from some incident and are hopefully FOLLOWING a recommended plan of rehabilitation.

Most walk in tubs, I have seen, are in a large size bathroom. Though, that does not mean it can’t be used in a regular full bathroom.

If possible, actually, it is a must, that we continue to follow the recommendations of the physical therapist, nutritionists and physicians who believe in maintaining our health for our best interest. Is it possible that two grab bars, installed on the front wall and side wall, will suffice? With the one on the front wall, going vertical, and the side grab bar installed at HIP LEVEL, going horizontal.

Is a shower chair an option? In Home-Health, the care manager is responsible for assisting the resident in the shower. I have installed about 30 shower chairs of one kind or another and found that wide, stable ones work well. Another example of assisting the resident does include, making sure the skin is dry, and I mean completely dry. This is the job of Home Health business, to make sure this quality of care is occurring and that any changes in skin are being documented, no matter where the care is being given.

Walk in tubs are one solution we use to reduce the risk of fall in the senior living arena. In home health, make sure you budget maintenance cost, clean the bath tub often, and make sure the seals are clean and not cracked. In the assisted living arena, we made sure to assign and check off when it was cleaned, because walk in baths and tubs are expensive. $4000.00 is equal to 200 man hours at $20.00 an hour. This is one factor to consider. Do we pay for the assistance, or do we seek outside assistance? What is the senior’s choice and is it affordable?